President Barack Obama signs National Monument designations in the Oval Office, July 10, 2015. The three new monuments include Berryessa Snow Mountain in California, Waco Mammoth in Texas, and the Basin and Range in Nevada. Standing behing the President, from left, are: Victor Knox, National Park Service, April Slayton, National Park Service, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, Chief Tom Tidwell, Randy Moore, Forest Service, and Director Neil Kornze. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)
Washington, DC–(ENEWSPF)–July 10, 2015 – 2:02 P.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: As many of you know, one of the great legacies of this incredible country of ours is our national parks and national monuments. It is something that we pass on from generation to generation, preserving the incredible beauty of this nation, but also reminding us of the richness of its history. And I am especially pleased to be able to announce three new designations that are going to be taking place in varied landscapes, but all of them speak to some incredible history.
The first, we are going to be designating the Waco Mammoth National Monument. This is one of the most incredible collections of mammoth fossils anywhere in the country. And for us to be able to preserve this space is going to be important not only to scientists but also to many people who are able to take a look at this incredible landscape down in Texas.
We’re also designating the Basin and Range area of southeastern Nevada — the Basin and Range National Monument. This is one of the most undisturbed corners of the Great Basin region, and its topography is unique. It is a place that attracts already a large number of visitors because of some of its unique geological aspects. And we’re going to be able to make sure that even more visitors are aware and take advantage of this incredible landscape.
And finally, we’re going to be designating the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument in California’s wild Inner Coast Range. Once covered by ocean waters, it’s a landscape that is shaped by geological forces that are unique, and it has been a refuge for Native American inhabitants for 11,000 years — so that gives you a sense of the time scales that we’re working off of with some of these national monuments.
Teddy Roosevelt, it’s been said, had America’s best idea when he talked about preserving the incredible national heritage. And for me to be able to add to that heritage is greatly appreciated.
I want to thank our outstanding Secretary of the Interior, Sally Jewell, and everybody in the Park Service who does such a great job.
One of the wonderful things about our use of the Antiquities Act is we’ve had the opportunity to engage local communities consistently throughout this process — businesses, residents, people who are profoundly attached to the land. And as a consequence, the local communities have huge buy-in to these things and are absolutely confident that not only is it going to be a real economic spur in these areas but it’s also going to be able to preserve everything that they love about the places where they live.
So you guys have done a great job. I’m very proud.
And with that, I’m going to start signing these things.
(The designations are signed.)
2:07 P.M. EDT